Crisis of the_1850s_final

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Crisis of the_1850s_final

  1. 1.  The first, big dividing event of the 1850s was the Compromise of 1850. While the South got more things in the Compromise, it ultimately hurt them – the harsher fugitive slave laws made many Northerners become fierce abolitionists and cry against slavery.
  2. 2.  Federal commissioners who handled fugitive slave cases would receive 5 dollars if the fugitive was freed and 10 dollars if not – it was essentially a bribe. In addition, Northerners who aided slaves would be either heavily fined or jailed. This turned many Northerners to abolitionists.
  3. 3.  The Republican Party developed as a moral outcry against slavery. It emerged in the Midwest and included many political parties, such as Whigs, Free Soilers, and Know-Nothings.
  4. 4.  Strapped for land for slavery, the South looked to Cuba for land. The Ostend Manifesto was the South’s document attempting to get Cuba from Spain – they offered $120 million for the island, and if Spain refused, the US said they had justification for war. The document leaked, and Northern free-soilers and abolitionists became even more enraged.
  5. 5.  The act split the Nebraska territory to Kansas and Nebraska, and both would be open to popular sovereignty. This angered Northerners who didn’t want popular sovereignty in new territories – they just wanted slavery abolished, so they didn’t follow the Fugitive Slave Laws.
  6. 6.  Abolitionists who didn’t want Kansas to be open to slavery flooded into the state along with pro- slavery southerners. Voting for a Constitution with either slavery or none, Abolitionists and pro-slavery men fought at the polls and held each other at gunpoint. Full scale battles even broke out.
  7. 7.  Senator Charles Sumner, a leading abolitionist, made a speech called “The Crime Against Kansas.” He condemned pro-slavery men, calling them vomit, and insulted one of the most liked members of the Senate, Andrew Butler of South Carolina. Preston Brooks of South Carolina angrily beat Sumner with his cane in response, and Sumner fell bleeding and unconscious. This incident furthered separation between North and South – Northerners hated Brooks for his actions whereas Southerners cheered him on.
  8. 8.  The Democrats nominated James Buchanan, and the new Republican party nominated John Fremont. Even though Buchanan won, Fremont managed to get 38% of the electoral vote. For just a 2 year old party, it was an impressive feat.
  9. 9.  Dred Scott was a slave in Wisconsin who sued for freedom since he’d lived there for 5 years. The Supreme Court ruled, since Dred Scott was a slave and not a citizen, he couldn’t sue in federal courts. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney also said that since slaves were private property, they could be taken into any territory and legally held there. Overall, it meant that Congress had no power to ban slavery from the territories, regardless of what the territories themselves wanted. This delighted Southerners, but not surprisingly, infuriated Northerners and Republicans.
  10. 10.  Lincoln, Republican nominee for the Illinois Senate seat, challenged Douglas to many joint debates from August to October 1858. The most notable was at Freeport Illinois, where Lincoln asked, what would happen if a territory voted slavery to be abolished? Would the people win, or would the Court’s ruling from Dred Scott saying they could not win? Douglas said that slavery would stay down if people voted it down – while technically always true by Popular Sovereignty, Southerners hated hearing it, and later split from Douglas and formed their own southern Democratic party.
  11. 11.  At Harpers Ferry, abolitionist John Brown killed seven people to attempt to lead a rebellion, but it failed, and he was captured. Southerners viewed as a murderous traitor, and thought the entire North was like John Brown.
  12. 12.  The Democratic party split into 3 sections (moderate, extreme, and compromise). Republican Abraham Lincoln won the presidency with a solid 180 electoral votes. In response, southern states, starting with South Carolina, seceded from the Union and made the Confederate States of America before Lincoln could actually take office in March.
  13. 13.  The Crittenden Amendments were a last-ditch effort to save the country from splitting. They were designed to appeal to the South. Lincoln flatly rejected it – he couldn’t agree to more slavery in the Union.

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